Columbia Drug Trafficking Lawyer

Drug trafficking is a very serious charge in Columbia. If convicted, this offense may affect your life in an unprecedented manner. However, with the help of an experienced drug attorney, you may be able to build a strong defense for yourself. A Columbia drug trafficking lawyer may be able to provide you with the legal representation you deserve.

Charges Associated with Trafficking Drugs

As a Columbia attorney could further explain, drug trafficking charges are not focused on intent, but the amount that is in possession of the person found. Specifically, for marijuana, if a person has 10 pounds up to 100 pounds for a first offense trafficking, they may be facing one to 10 years in prison. For cocaine or methamphetamine, if a person has 10 to 28 grams in their possession, it is considered trafficking, and for the first offense, they would be facing 3 to 10 years in prison. For heroin offenses, a person with 4 to 14 grams is considered the most severe case and faces 7 to 25 years for a first offense. All of these are felony charges.

Endangering Others

One of the other common side charges is child endangerment. Sometimes, children are involved when the transported drugs are in the car that gets pulled over for a traffic stop. Drugs could be found in a secret compartment, somewhere in the trunk, or in a bag in the passenger part of the car. As far as being held responsible, it is rare for someone to be charged when somebody has a drug overdose. For indirect responsibility and additional criminal charges, the most common is the child endangerment charge.

Role of Jurisdictional Borders in a Drug Trafficking Charge

Jurisdictional borders are very important because if drug trafficking occurs within a state, specifically South Carolina since it is a state charge. However, once drugs are mailed over state lines, once they cross over one state into another, it becomes a federal case and is treated much differently. The federal criminal justice system is much different and the penalties can be more significant for drug cases in federal court versus state court. So, the jurisdictional border is a big issue and depends on whether the drug trafficking occurred within the state or over state lines.

Columbia Law Enforcement Cracking Down on Drug Trafficking

One of the most common ways to receive trafficking charges is, on interstates, police officers will be profiling out-of-state license plates that are clearly rental cars. If the car is located on one of the major interstates through which they believe drugs are being transported and they see a rental car that has an out-of-state license plate, law enforcement might make these traffic stops hoping that they are going to catch drug traffickers. When they pull them over, if they smell the odor of alcohol or marijuana or there are indicators of criminal activity or nervousness, that can be cause for reasonable suspicion to do a drug dog sniff around the car to see whether there is a presence of drugs. A local attorney may be able to find constitutional violations in the way law enforcement pursued drug trafficking charges that could weaken the prosecution’s case.

Drug Trafficking Cases Involving Multiple Defendants

This happens very often in a lot of cases. For the federal court, there are almost always multiple defendants either through the federal conspiracy charges or through some type of drug ring in which drugs were being shipped from the international drug trade and there are multiple parties involved through the shipment and receiving. In federal cases, it is very common. For state cases, multiple defendants are not as common because a lot of times cases involve someone who has been paid to be the person that is going to carry the drugs. That person is essentially the escort and has been hired to deliver the drugs. A lot of the times, it will be one person in the car who gets in trouble in state cases.

When you have multiple defendants, self-preservation may become an issue. People may be willing to lie, a lot of times, to help themselves through that self-preservation. They might be more willing to cut a deal with the prosecutor, to try to find a way to provide testimony against another co-defendant in hopes that they will receive a more lenient sentence, or to have a better deal cut for themselves to minimize or reduce the charge that they have received. A Columbia drug trafficking attorney, on the other hand, may be able to serve as your tenacious ally, representing you and your interests every step of the way.

Hire a Columbia Drug Trafficking Attorney

By hiring an attorney, you are hiring someone who you may be able to trust. In cases like these, trustworthiness and confidentiality may play a crucial role in avoiding a potential conviction. If you have been charged with drug trafficking, contact an experienced attorney. A Columbia drug trafficking lawyer may be able to give you the legal representation you deserve.